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Home arrow newsitems arrow Macron : Citizens' Debates on EU's Future = crucial from Summer 2018

Macron : Citizens' Debates on EU's Future = crucial from Summer 2018

Written by ACM
Friday, 20 October 2017
macron_press_conf_in_eu_summit_brx_eurofora_400
 
*Brussels/EU Summit/Angelo Marcopolo/- It's around Summer 2018 that EU Citizens' potential Role in PanEuropean Public Debates on the Future of Europe, is due to arrive at a Crucial Stage, before Final Decisions up to the forthcoming EU Parliament's Elections on May 2019, revealed in substance the New French President, Emmanuel Macron, speaking to Journalists, including "Eurofora", at his concluding Press Conference, at the End of the October 2017 EU Heads of State/Governments' Summit, Today in Brussels.


On this occasion, he practically resumed his 2 successive landmark Speeches, recently at the Highly Symbolic locations of the eye-catching Acropolis Hill of Athens, where Democracy had been born in Ancient Greece, followed by the prestigious Sorbonne University in Paris, (See : ...)


The overall move obviously heads at a Direction in Harmony also with "Eurofora"s 1997-2017 initial Project to Boost EU Citizens' Public Debates on European Decisions seriously affecting their Lives and/or Society at large, (See, f.ex. : ... + ..., etc). So that it's probably not a pure Coincidence if, while leaving, President Macron kindly saluted "Eurofora", asking if things went well enough (in order to be Ready ?)... 


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 - "We should Hold our (Popular) Democratic Conventions Before the Electoral Campaign" for the May 2019 Vote of a new EU Parliament+, in order to have, after the National, "also European (Public) Debates", he stressed.


 - "That's why, I wish (for the EU Heads of State/Government) to have Finalized our Discussions until the Summer 2018", the French President noted, precisely.


 - "So that we can have a(n EU Leaders') Road-Map on the Main Challenges for the Future of Europe" at that juncture, he invited.


 - Because, "that's anOther (Alternative) way to Launch a European Debate", he explained, (apparently in order for some eventually reluctant parties, not to block everythinng, but allow to Advance Forward : See Infra).


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 - In this regard, at any case, "We (EU Council) shall have a relevant Debate since the very Beginning of Next Year" (2018), Macron highlighted.


 - In fact, "there is Not any Technical Difficulty" on that Issue : - "It's just a matter of Collective Political Will", he observed.  


  - Such a kind of EU Council's Debate "is due, at any case, to take place also on the occasion of the EU Leaders' Agenda" (just Drafted by Donald Tusk, EU Council's President, on the Basis, mainly, of the "Bratislava Roadmap", already Agreed since September 2016 at EU 27's Summit in Slovakia, (Comp. "Eurofora"'s relevant NewsReports from that Brtatilava EU event, f.ex. at: ....), and many have already accepted that, Macron noted.


 - "That's why, the positions of Some Parties which appear Reluctant to move on that, seem Incomprehensible", he Criticized. A fortori, "since they should", on the Contrary, "be among the First to Push towards a European Democracy ! And, it's Better for them, Not to be just an Aggregate of National Parties, But to become Real European Parties", he rightfully urged.


- Thus, f.ex., EU Parliament's "President Antonio Tajani, ensured me of his wish to push forward such Debates"


+ And, in parallel, "at any case, I intend to Push Forward the matter of the Creation of European Lists" for Candifdate MEPs from various Political Parties, Macron promised.


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  - On the Substance of the Issues at Stake, the new French President insisted on "an Overall View of the European Project", withOut Limiting the main Debate only on one or another Specific Point, independently of is eventual Importance.


    => In this regard, Macron pointed at his landmark, but quite Long, recent "Speech at Sorbonne" University in Paris, where he had developed a Plan described as a Threefold "Triptych", that he usefully Resumed Today in a few words :


-  (1) "Sovereignity", (2) "Unity", and (3) "Democracy", he reiterated, Observing also that he "find(s) that kind of Triptych also in the Proposals made by (EU Council's) President Tusk", mutatis-mutandis, (Comp. Supra).



(1) "Sovereignity, means that we must Agree on 6 Elements : Migration, Defence, Energy and Environment, Digitalisation, our (EU's) Neighbourhood and Development policy", as well as "our Economic, Financial and Fiscak Strength : the Economic and Monetary Union" : "These 6 Elements compose what we call "Sovereignity", he explained.


 + This includes also some so-called "Technical Problems", as, f.ex., that of "a Common Budget for €uroArea", etc., since, "if we work well on them, then, we'll practically have such a Common Budget, de facto !", Macron Highighted.


- Concrning "Migration", (which became a "Hard" Issue after the 2015-2016 Giant Tsunami pf more than 1,5 Millions of People through Turkey, and was "further Complicated by those Relocatio. ), "we (EU) have to Develop relevant Policies with the Countries of Origin and Transit", as well as to "Protect our (EU's External) Borders", "and Unify our Asylum Systems", as well as "Coordinate the Influx", he stressed.


- "If we manage to achieve that, it will Help Desescalate the overall Debate", the New French President ensured.


 - In fact, all that "is going to be Discussed, by EU Leaders, During the Next Few Weeks'



(2) "After, it's about Unity : i.e. what Keeps Europe Together".
- "It's the Social and Fiscal Cohesion", "it's Culture and Education", Macron added.


 - "We (EU Leaders) are going to Discuss about that on November" 2017, "and Take Decisions asap", he optimistically highlighted, referring anew to Tusk's Draft "Agenda".



(3) "Democracy", is about "Institutional Innovations", such as, f.ex., "Democratic Innovations, our Trade Policy, and the Creation of Democratic Conventions", where everyone might adapt his tune accordingly, etc.


+ Afterwards, it will, naturally, be necessary to Better Coordinate our Approaches, but, at least for the Time being, I hope that We (EU Heads of State/Government) can Start to Advance Ahead", Macron concluded for now.

 

(../..)


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(NDLR: "DraftNews", already send to "Eurofora"'s Donors/Subscribers earlier. A more accurate, full Final Version, might be published asap.)

 

 

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  imag0573_400

    An "Eugenic" loophole Amendment, which might expose to Dangers reminiscent of "3rd Reich's" notorious Genetic Abuses, hidden at the last minute inside an otherwise Good, larger Health policy Package scheduled to be voted on Thursday, was strongly denounced by a coalition of MEPs from various Political Groups and Countries, in a Press Conference held this afternoon at EU Parliament in Strasbourg.

    Mainly calling to "Select Human Embryos", via "Genetic Counselling" and "pre-implantation" Techniques including "Genetic Tests", in order to "Eradicate Hereditary rare Diseases", it might open ways to Dangerous Practices in Future, they denounced in substance.

    But they also made it clear that a much larger Report inside which this Controversial Amendment "No 15" was added in dubious circumstances, officialy destinated to struggle against "Rare Diseases", and drafted by Professor Antonios Trakatellis, was otherwise "an Excellent Report", aiming at a "completely Uncontroversial target" of Health policy on which "all MEPs and Experts are united, believing that Europe should act" to protect People's Health (See "EuroFora"'s earlier News).

    The controversy came at a particularly delicate moment for the EU in relation to Citizens, at the eve of June 2009 EU Elections, and shortly before Ireland re-votes for "Lisbon Treaty"..    

- Denouncing risks of "an Eugenic demand, very similar to what we had during the 3rd Reich in Germany, but now coming from some Scientisists themselves", German ChristianDemocrat/EPP MEP Dr. Peter Liese stressed that critical MEPs were against "Eugenic" engineering with "Selection of Human Embryos", and anything which might ultimately lead up to to a "Selection of Human Race". It doesn't help to "eradicate" Human Lives, he added.


    Several Experts and NGOs expressed "Deep Concern", as f;ex. DR M.C. Cornel of the "European Society of Human Genetics", which stressed, on this occasion, that "the importance of Non-Directiveness in Reproductive issues is a Central characteristic of Human Genetics, after the Atrocities committed in the name of Genetics in the first half or the 20th Century".

     - "This is completely Unacceptable", stressed Italian Liberal MEP Vittorio Prodi, on the Controversial Amendment, also because pushes to "eliminate early Human Life", as he noted.

     - "This opens a Dangerous Road, rather a Motorway", denounced Danish MEP Mrs Margrette Auken, from the "Greens", observing that various similar attempts were made in the Past "not only in Germany, but also in several other Countries, "even at the 1970ies", "f.ex. on forced Sterilisation of Roma" People, and other criticisable situations f.ex. in the UK, in Sweden, etc. as she said.

    + Other NGOs, as f.ex. "LebenHilfe" from Berlin, added that, among various other Risks, could also be that, by exploiting the pre-implantation Genetic Diagnostics and the Selection of "healthy" Embryos, some may "propagate" several "Eugenic" aims, starting f.ex. by pushing to eradicate Human Livies which might "Cost too much" to preserve, ultimately exposing to dangers reminiscent of the "3rd Reich"'s atrocious abuses.

    In consequence, ChristianDemocrats/EPP and "Green" MEPs "decided by Majority to vote against" this Controversial Amendment, anounced to Journalists the 5 MEPs who participated in the Press Conference, representing a wide spectrum, from Liberals to "Greens" and ChristianDemocrats, and from Hungary, Italy, Germany and Danemark up to Ireland (Gay Mitchell), etc.
----------------------------------
    Hungarian ChristianDemocrat MEP Laszlo Surjan said "that it was "Suddenly, at the End of the Procedure" in Committee, that "appeared this (Controversial) Amendment, which has nothing to do" with the main purpose of the Report, on which all agreed.

    He denounced an "Unhonest" move, and called to "avoid this kind of unacceptable situations". Nobody should "Select People", Surjan stressed.

    - "We (MEPs) had No Chance to Discuss" this last-minute Amendment earlier added at a Committee's level, said German MEP Peter Liese

    Speaking to "EuroFora", Dr. Liese, the Spokesman of the ChristianDemocrat/EPP Group in EU Parliament, said that MEPs didn't oppose other references of the Report f.ex. on "Genetic Tests", because they were "no proposals" to impose them, while, on the contrary, there was "a Problem" if anyone attempted to "impose" f.ex. this or that Genetic Technique and "Genetic Counselling", etc. to the People on human reproduction.
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The precise Text :
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    Controversial parts of Amendment No 15 ask mainly "to lead finally to the Eradication" of "Hereditary" "rare diseases", "through Genetic Counselling .., and ..pre-Implantation Selection of healthy Embryos".

    But  EU Rapporteur Professor Trakatellis, said to "EuroFora" that fears should be alleviated by Guarantees that all this should be done only "where appropriate", when it's "not contrary to existing National Law", and "always on a Voluntary basis", according to other Parts of the Amendment.

    He stressed that the main aim was to allow "a free and informed choice of persons involved", without imposing them anything :  - "It's not an obligatory, but advisary" text, he said.

    To make that point clear, he was ready, in agreement with many MEPs, to eventually drop at least that part of the controversial Amendment which initially called for "efforts to ..lead finally to the Eradication of those rare diseases" "which are Hereditary".

    But, until late Wednesday evening, reportedly together with many other MEPs, he stood by all the rest of the controversial Amendment, (fex. on the "Genetic Counselling" and the "pre-implantation Selection of healthy Embryos"), so that critical MEPs, going from ChristianDemocrats as Dr. Liese, to "Greens" or "Ind/Dem", observed to "EuroFora" that "this was not enough" to close the dangerous loophole.

    Particularly since, as Professor Trakatellis noted himself, "this is already allowed to the U.K.", and "other National Legislations would probably follow, sooner or later" in a similar direction. As for a general call to "Eradicate Hereditary rare Diseases", this "should happen, at any case, in practice, de facto", to protect public Health.

    On the contrary, "our goal should be to help patients suffering from rare diseases, not to eradicate the patients. In case of genetic disease risk, the decision should not be guided by scenarios" made by politicians. "Perents who may decide to accept a child, even if handicapped or with genetic disease, must be respected and supported with solidarity", critical MEPs stated.

    - "Any Pressure" to "a patient or couple (who "should be able to make an informed choice consistent with their own values"),"from health Professionals, Public Health Policies or Governemental Institutions, or Society at large, should be avoided", stresses the "European Society for Human Genetics".

----------------------------------

Each MEP's vote will be registered !

-----------------------------------   

The Socialist Group requested a "Split vote" on the Amendment 15, first without, and afterwards with the words "lead finally to the Eradication" etc.


    But the first "split vote" leaves intact all the other parts of the Controversial Amendment, (i.e. "Genetic Counselling", "Selection of healthy Embryos", etc).

    That's why, 3 Groups of MEPs : ChristianDemocrats/EPP, "Greens/EFA", and "Ind/Dem", have asked for "Roll Call Votes", on everything regarding the Controversial Amendment No 15, and on the final outcome of the resulting Report as amended, which will register all the individual positions to be taken by each MEP.   

Something which will obviously make each MEP think twice before voting for one or another choice, to be sure that he/she will make the right choice in front of EU Citizens, particularly at these pre-Election times...


    Crucial Votes were scheduled between 12 Noon and 1 p.m. local Strasbourg time, in the middle of a long series of various other Reports, and after a long Public Debate on the larger Health policy package, from 9 to 11.50 am.

    The specific Report inside which was hidden the controversial Amendment is due to be debated between 11 and 12 am.

    So that more last-minute Surprises may not be excluded a priori...

    Particularly at the present Historic moment, when even the Institutional Future of the EU depends on the result of a second Referendum on "Lisbon Treaty", later this year, in ...Ireland, a mainly Catholic country, where People are particularly sensitive in such kind of socio-cultural and values issues...
 

      ***     
 
     (Draft due to be updated).
 
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